February 16, 2022

Indiana bill to ban transgender girls from girls school sports passes Senate committee

Article origination IPB News
Hundreds of Hoosiers have gathered at the Statehouse to protest HB 1041 and HB 1134 this session, including a rally ahead of a Senate education committee meeting Wednesday. - (Jeanie Lindsay/IPB News)

Hundreds of Hoosiers have gathered at the Statehouse to protest HB 1041 and HB 1134 this session, including a rally ahead of a Senate education committee meeting Wednesday.

(Jeanie Lindsay/IPB News)

A Senate committee approved a controversial bill aimed at transgender athletes Wednesday. House Bill 1041 would ban transgender girls from participating in girls school sports.

The bill's author, Rep. Michelle Davis (R-Whiteland) insists it's about preserving fairness for girl athletes. But critics have said it will harm transgender children, and doesn't effectively address fairness in sports. 

LGBTQ Hoosiers and allies have rallied against the bill at the Statehouse, and lawmakers heard hours of testimony from Hoosiers opposed to the legislation last week.

Sen. J.D. Ford (D-Indianapolis) offered two amendments to the bill ahead of the committee's vote. One would have stripped the bill and assigned the topic to a summer study committee instead, but both of Ford's amendments were defeated by Republicans. 

READ MORE: LGBTQ advocates condemn bill to ban trans girl student athletes, national group supporting it


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Ford said he's concerned about a promised lawsuit from the ACLU of Indiana if the bill becomes law, and Attorney General Todd Rokita's promise to fight the lawsuit.

"We have had the opportunity to put it into summer study and avoid all that, and again it's just unkind," Ford said.

The bill passed 8-3, and now heads to the full Senate for consideration.

Contact reporter Jeanie at jlindsa@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @jeanjeanielindz.

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